Kate Aitken via Crowdrise
April 29, 2012
BENEFITING: SHINING HOPE FOR COMMUNITIES
EVENT DATE: Apr 15, 2012
As part of my preparation for the Paris Marathon on April 15th, I am working to raise money for a fantastic organization that I have been working closely with over the past nine months.
Shining Hope for Communities was started by Echoing Green Fellows Jessica Posner and Kennedy Odede just over 3 years ago. Their organization works to combat gender inequality and extreme poverty in the Kibera slum of Nairobi, Kenya by linking tuition-free schools for girls to accessible social services for all, including healthcare, adult literacy, employment, and clean water access. Shining Hope has received global recognition for their work pioneering a community-focused model of change, including praise from President Bill Clinton and coverage on CNN and in the New York Times.
Shining Hope for Communities is founded on the belief that the future of women in impoverished and patriarchal environments depends on concrete, integrated links between education and community elevation. By investing in health and economic success through girls’ education, the organization demonstrates that benefitting women benefits the whole community and cultivates an ethos that recognizes women as respected members of society.
The Kibera slum of Nairobi is home to 1.5 million people living in an area the size of Central Park, making it one of the most densely populated places on the planet. Life expectancy in Kibera is 30 years, compared to 50 years in the rest of Kenya and nearly 80 years in the developed world. One in five children in Kibera do not live to see their fifth birthdays. 66% of girls in Kibera routinely trade sex for food by the age of 16; many begin as early as age six. Young women in Kibera contract HIV at a rate five times that of their male counterparts. Only 8% of girls in Kibera ever have the chance to go to school.
Educating a girl in places like Kibera means she will earn more, invest 90% of her earnings in her family, be three times less likely to become HIV positive, and have fewer, healthier children more likely to live past age five.
In 2010 alone, Shining Hope for Communities increased enrolment at the Kibera School for Girls – the first of its kind in Kibera – by 48%; opened a community health clinic that treats over 1,000 patients a month; built a bio-latrine facility that serves an average of 200 people a day; installed 100,000 liters of clean drinking water in the community; and built a community center to host youth and community groups, including employment training. Youth members who participated in the center’s income-generation project reported an 80% increase in income in 2010. Already this year, Shining Hope has opened a second classroom building and also inaugurated their Clean Water Project in Kibera.
Here's how your donation translates into real impact for Shining Hope:
- $30 sponsors a student at the Kibera School for Girls for 1 month
- $55 gives an entire class enough school supplies for 1 month
- $100 gives the Women's Empowerment Program supplies for 1 month
- $375 provides students and staff with two meals per day for a month
- $500 buys a computer for the clinic, cyber cafe or school
- $2,000 provides the clinic with a year of basic medical supplies
Any and all contributions to Shining Hope are very much appreciated, no matter the size. Additionally, if you’re interested in getting involved with Shining Hope for Communities or want to apply to our upcoming Young Professionals Board, please let me know.
Thanks so much for your support, and I’ll update you from the finish line!